Canadian business software provider and former phone giant, BlackBerry has sued Facebook, along with its subsidiaries WhatsApp and Instagram, for infringing on its messaging patents in a Los Angeles court.
“As a cybersecurity and embedded software leader, BlackBerry’s view is that Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp could make great partners in our drive toward a securely connected future, and we continue to hold this door open to them,” BlackBerry said.
Facebook brushed off the suit as little more than a desperate move from a fading company.
“Blackberry’s suit sadly reflects the current state of its messaging business,” said Paul Grewal, deputy general counsel for Facebook. “Having abandoned its efforts to innovate, Blackberry is now looking to tax the innovation of others. We intend to fight.”
BlackBerry, which nearly a decade ago was one of the world’s largest smartphone makers, has in the past several years retreated into supplying software and services for corporate and government clients.
One of the core services found is BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), a secure way to exchange text and images and an early competitor to the likes of WhatsApp. BBM was, particularly in countries where text message rates were high.
Other patents address photo tagging and messaging time stamps. BlackBerry is seeking unspecified monetary damages. It also appears to be seeking a partnership. “As a cybersecurity and embedded software leader, BlackBerry’s view is that Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp could make great partners in our drive toward a securely connected future,” the spokesperson said in the statement.